New England Gardening Advice By the Month -September
Ask a New Englander their favorite month of the year, and 8 times out of 10 they will say September. Warm, dry days and cool nights stir us out of our summer haze and back out onto the trails, bikes and gardens where we enjoy spending time.
If you followed our advice last month, you took care of the watering when mother nature didn't. By watering deeply and less often, you encouraged your plants roots to reach down deeper into the soil to find their moisture, and your tomatoes (amongst other temperamental plants) thank you. Right about now you should be up to your knees in red, ripe juicy tomatoes and many other summer vegetables.
But What About Your Flower Garden? For much of New England, the strongest blooms of the season have waned and it seems the plants have given their all for the season. That may be true for many plants, but there are plenty of plants out there that can take (and very much enjoy) the cooler temps that New England can dish up in the fall. The most popular of which for the season is the fall mum, which is a perennial in most locations and will come back year after year in the garden. After a very unimpressive spring and summer of leaf growth, the mum comes into its own in September and October, taking over the fall New England garden at many homes.
But there are other choices as well.... did you know there are fall-blooming lilies and crocus that will thrive in mid to southern New England gardens? They are a little harder to find than the average bulb but well worth the hunt. The Magic or Resurrection Lily is actually a relative of the winter-blooming Amaryllis and looks like a cross between the two.
There's is only one more piece of gardening advice for September- go to the garden center and buy your perennials now, after they have bloomed and are dying down. Why? Because you will save big money over the prices they were charging for the plant just 2 months ago; and the plant is just as healthy and strong. Besides, now is the best time to get perennials in your garden anyway, with the cool temperatures allowing them to acclimate and grow roots before the cold weather sets in. The same holds true for trees, shrubs or any other large plant that may a while to get used to a new setting. So get planting in your New England garden and we promise you will be rewarded next Spring!